I can’t tell you how many stories I hear every week from women whose husbands have been diagnosed as sex addicts and refuse to take full accountability for their actions.
They often get blamed by the addict, the addict’s therapist, or the religious faith leaders in their community.
Dr. Omar Minwalla, who runs the Institute for Sexual Health, just published an incredible paper in February called the “Secret Sexual Basement”. Dr. Minwalla has been a leader in the partner trauma model that recognizes that those in a relationship with someone who exhibits Deceptive, Compartmentalized, Sexual-Relational behavior are traumatized.
Dr. Minwalla describes sex addicts as having a “secret sexual basement.” The metaphor describes a room in their house the partner doesn’t know about…. and that the addict does. The sex addict lies, deceives, and engages in other hurtful behavior to maintain this secret sexual basement.
Dr. Minwalla doesn’t call it sex addiction.
He calls it a “Compulsive-Abusive Sexual-Relational Disorder.”
I appreciate his explicit use of the term “abuse”. When we treat sex addiction just for sexual behaviors, we miss this abusive aspect. The abuse is due to maintaining the secret sexual basement – the lies, deception, and gaslighting.
Partners of Compulsive-Abusive Sexual-Relational Disorder suffer a life-changing impact on the body, brain, heart, and soul.
If you were in a relationship with a partner who has lied, manipulated, gaslit you, and hid a secret life– you probably feel crazy.
And you should feel crazy!!!!
Their behavior has a profound biological and neurological impact on you–both how you interact in the world and how you perceive reality. Helping women going through betrayal trauma is the basis of my work. I help you learn to sort through the fog.
It takes time to come back to you.
It takes time to come back from the gaslighting.
It takes time to reclaim and rediscover your truth and learn to trust yourself again.
It takes time and investment in you.
You’re worth it, and you CAN come back from it.
If this has sparked any fires in you or you want to talk about it further, go ahead and message me and let’s talk about it. If your life has been impacted by another’s compulsive, abusive sexual behaviors, I would love to support your healing journey.
Take care of your sweet self,